Cruise Around World Party -7yr- Suitcase Cake
Christi in Conway, AR, USA
For my daughters 7th birthday she wanted an around the world party. The first place I looked for great ideas was this website! After reading all the party ideas this is what we came up with for her party.
INVITATION: I took a photo of a cruise ship in dock and photoshopped in my daughter in a sailor dress holding luggage and it said You are invited to Cruise Around the World with (name)." I made these into a postcard with all the party information on the back. It was listed like a cruise ticket with Departure DateDocketc. As the guests arrived (24 kids plus adults) each child was given a passport and a carryon bag. The passports I made from navy card stock cut in half with white paper folded and stapled together. I put the childs name in the front and I took a gold paint pen and drew the eagle symbol and wrote "PASSPORT" on each one. This was done well in advance a little at a time. The carry-on bag was a brown gift bag from the $ store that resembled a piece of luggage. I took a stencil and drew the Eiffel Tower and the word "travel" on each on and let the kids decorate the front with travel stickers.
Inside each bag was a mini bag of confetti sunglasses and globe eraser(Oriental Trading). We carried the bag to each world and got a 'prize.' The we "boarded" the ship. The party was held at my Church Family Life Center (nice gym) that has a small stage. My Dad had built a white cruise ship (only one sided) that we had on top of the stage. The kids walked up the steps onto the 'ship' and took a seat. We had chairs set up onstage but you couldn't see them from the floor. The bottom of the stage was draped in an ocean scene (local party store) that made it look like the ship was on the water. The kids loved the ship and it made for cute pictures! My Dad even had some round port holes to look out and the ship had my daughters name and the ship # was her birthdate. Everyone waved bon voyage to the parents and we were off! My husband was the cruise director and would tell the kids interesting facts about each place before we stopped at each port.
ACTIVITIES: First stop was Mexico. We had an area decorated with blankets (from a trip to Mexico)and pinatas and played some music. We had a pull string pinata and everyone stood in line for their chance. I had taken a round pinata that was already blue and green and added postcards from around the world. When it broke the kids all got candy and put it in their carry-on bags. Then I stamped each passport with a 'sun' and we boarded the ship again.
Next stop was Paris France. I had a table decorated with a 2 ft. black iron Eiffel Tower and large stuffed pink poodle and books about France. I also had some decorative black and white boxes that looked like luggage all stacked up beside the centerpiece. The girls got 'makeovers'and got a lip gloss. I had black fuzzy stick-on mustaches for the boys but not many would wear them! I also had an art easel set up with paper and markers to create their 'mini Monet' as the boys were waiting on the girls to finish up. Stamped any Eiffel Tower in their passports.
Then off to China. I had another table set up with a Chinese hat sword mini statues of the Terra Cotta warriors and other neat souvenirs from an amazing trip my husband and I took to China in the spring. We played a game where the kids tried to see how many gummy fish they could pick up with chopsticks. They got to keep the candy and the chopsticks(OT) and also got a fan(OT) and a fortune cookie. The fortune cookies had Bible verses instead of the usual fortune (OT). Used a real stamp that has my name in Chinese characters from my trip for the passports.
Next stop was Antarctica. We set up a large piece of styrofoam and made a snowy scene in front of it. I had a popup tent that looked like an igloo large stuffed penguins 4 penguin cutouts that were about 3ft tall and mounds of 'snow' all around the styrofoam. We went 'ice fishing' with the little fishing poles that had clothes pins attached. I sat behind with some of my friends and we clipped little polar bear pop up toys (OT)as their souvenir. Stamped the passports with a snowflake. Our last stop was Hawaii where we celebrated with a big luau! We sang to the birthday girl and everyone got a lei (OT).
FOOD: We set up a long table decorated with a grass skirt and set up all the food. Nachos from Mexico mini egg rolls for China pineapple and fresh fruit for Hawaii pesto cream cheese dip shaped like an igloo with cream cheese penguin for Antarctica (Wilton) crossiants and cheese for France. I made the birthday cake. It was shaped like a suitcase covered in brown chocolate fondant. I made a little fondant figurine to look like my daughter that sat on top and made the earth (wilton ball pan to make the circular shape) that also sat on top. It was a big hit! All the tables were covered in bright colored tablecloths with luau confetti and little luau and fish themed centerpieces.
We had a 'Tiki Hut' set up to serve the drinks- hawaiian punch capri sun etc. My Dad had also made it out of wood with the roof covered in straw and a little sign with my daughters name. I copied some fact and coloring sheets with information from each place we visited and the front page had clip art of a cruise ship that said "Thanks for cruisin around the world with me!" -tied the sheets together with curling ribbon to make a little activity book to give the kids as they left.
The party was a huge hit and not terribly expensive as most of the stops were decorated with things we had or recycled from past birthday parties (luau penguins fiesta Paris)! Thanks again to this awesome website for great birthday party ideas!"